Sun rises on St Tropez's profits after nude Kate Moss brightens up a chilly spring

Supermodel posed naked in a series of photographs for fake tan company

Kate Moss has single-handedly helped the fake tan lotion St Tropez to shrug off the dismal weather and increase sales since she became the “face and body” of the brand a month ago.

The supermodel posed naked in a series of publicity shots as part of her rumoured, seven-figure sponsorship deal.

The blaze of press and online publicity that resulted had an immediate impact on sales, the brand owner,  PZ Cussons, said today.

While you might expect rain and cold would be good for self-tanning paint, sales usually need to be kicked off with sunny weather as people strip down to flesh-baring clothes.

“Kate has certainly been a great help,” said Cussons’ finance director, Brandon Leigh.

However, while the windswept British Isles are a key market, Moss was really hired to push the brand internationally, he said.

“We’ve had a great response already in places like Brazil and the US. Kate is an international star,” said Mr Lee.

Profits for the last financial year at the business that also makes Imperial Leather and Carex will be in line with expectations, it said today, suggesting a rise from £92m to about £105m.

The company bought St Tropez for £62m from private-equity owners in 2010 and grown sales by about 10 per cent a year since.

It also recently launched into the babycare market with Cussons Mum & Me and will be hoping for a boost in sales from the arrival of the royal baby later this year.

Never one to miss a PR opportunity, the company will be offering a prize lottery for all babies born on the  same day.

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